Melinda Gates with Go-Jek team members in Indonesia
Gates Archive
Melinda Gates with Go-Jek team members in Indonesia
Now playing
05:10
Melinda Gates on fighting technological inequality
Getty Images/CNN
Now playing
01:31
Ocasio-Cortez 'inclined' to agree that Justice Breyer should retire
Now playing
02:50
'Beyond belief': Pelosi on Trump's DOJ saying they were unaware of data breach
Now playing
02:47
Pelosi: Manchin left door ajar on HR1 and I'm not giving up
WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 28:  Attorney General William Barr appears before the House Oversight Committee In his first congressional testimony in more than a year, Barr is expected to face questions from the committee about his deployment of federal law enforcement agents to Portland, Oregon, and other cities in response to Black Lives Matter protests; his role in using federal agents to violently clear protesters from Lafayette Square near the White House last month before a photo opportunity for President Donald Trump in front of a church; his intervention in court cases involving Trump's allies Roger Stone and Michael Flynn; and other issues. on July 28, 2020 on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. (Photo by Matt McClain-Pool/Getty Images)
Matt McClain/Pool/Getty Images
WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 28: Attorney General William Barr appears before the House Oversight Committee In his first congressional testimony in more than a year, Barr is expected to face questions from the committee about his deployment of federal law enforcement agents to Portland, Oregon, and other cities in response to Black Lives Matter protests; his role in using federal agents to violently clear protesters from Lafayette Square near the White House last month before a photo opportunity for President Donald Trump in front of a church; his intervention in court cases involving Trump's allies Roger Stone and Michael Flynn; and other issues. on July 28, 2020 on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. (Photo by Matt McClain-Pool/Getty Images)
Now playing
03:33
Legal analyst: Normally, Barr would have known about subpoenas
CNN
Now playing
02:02
Barr's answer draws scrutiny amid new scandal
CNN
Now playing
03:32
Watergate journalist: Trump's actions go further than Nixon's
raffensberger
CNN
raffensberger
Now playing
03:25
'This is unacceptable': Election official speaks out after threats against wife
Deep State Dogs
Now playing
03:29
See how internet sleuths are hunting down insurrectionists
Vladimir Putin NBC intv
NBC
Vladimir Putin NBC intv
Now playing
04:22
Hear how Putin compared Donald Trump to Joe Biden
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger speaks during a news conference on Wednesday, November 11, 2020, in Atlanta.
Brynn Anderson/AP
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger speaks during a news conference on Wednesday, November 11, 2020, in Atlanta.
Now playing
02:35
Family of GA secretary of state got death threats months after election
Pennsylvania State House
Now playing
02:04
Pennsylvania lawmaker to GOP: 'Are you not 100% White?'
CNN
Now playing
01:28
'Fishing expedition': Honig slams Trump's DOJ
Getty Images/AP
Now playing
02:08
Trump runs into a problem in revenge quest against GOP governor
CNN
Now playing
02:32
Schiff reacts to DOJ subpoena: Shocked ... but not surprised
CNN
Now playing
04:38
Democratic lawmaker: Trump 'weaponized' DOJ against opponents
Washington CNN —  

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim abruptly resigned nearly three years ahead of schedule on Monday, setting up an opening for President Donald Trump to fill – and a potential clash with other countries over the long-standing practice of the US making the appointment.

Trump has repeatedly voiced disdain for multilateral institutions and questioned US foreign aid commitments, making it likely his authority to name a new president will be challenged by emerging economies that have in recent decades grown increasingly opposed to US dominance over the global development bank.

The White House did not immediately say on Monday whether Trump plans to name a new president or provide a list of potential candidates.

The Trump administration has enjoyed a close working relationship with Kim. Ivanka Trump, the President’s daughter and senior adviser, developed a woman’s entrepreneurship initiative in partnership with the World Bank in 2017 with the goal of providing more than $1 billion in financing for small-business owners.

HAMBURG, GERMANY - JULY 08:  Australian Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull, World Bank president Jim Yong Kim, Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Ivanka Trump and U.S President Donald Trump during the G20 summit on July 8, 2017 in Hamburg, Germany. (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
Matt Cardy/Getty Images
HAMBURG, GERMANY - JULY 08: Australian Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull, World Bank president Jim Yong Kim, Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Ivanka Trump and U.S President Donald Trump during the G20 summit on July 8, 2017 in Hamburg, Germany. (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)

Trump’s daughter took the idea in April 2017 to Kim, who agreed to fast track the initiative. Her involvement in the international fund drew scrutiny from watchdog groups, which said the setup could open up potential conflicts of interest.

Ivanka Trump also drew intense scrutiny after briefly taking her father’s seat at the table during the G20 meeting that July, sitting with world leaders to help launch the loan program.

Kim defended the younger Trump’s effort at the summit. “This is not a cute little project,” he said. “This is going to be a major driver of economic growth in the future … and it’s going to drive gender equality at the same time.”

Trump himself has largely ignored the World Bank, surprising some who expected his administration to have harsher words for the lender. He has also praised the outgoing president, calling him a “friend” and a “great guy,” and suggesting he himself might have selected him. “I might have even appointed him, but I didn’t,” Trump said during the 2017 G20 meetings in Germany.

Kim, who had served in the role since 2012, shifted the focus of the bank to attracting private-sector investment in development projects.

He announced Monday he would leave his post well ahead of his term’s expiration at the end of 2021. If Kim had served out his tenure, Trump would have had an opportunity to name a successor only during a potential second term in the White House.

A statement from the bank said the outgoing president would join a firm focusing on infrastructure investments in the developing world and return to the board of a health organization he founded three decades ago.

“It has been a great honor to serve as President of this remarkable institution, full of passionate individuals dedicated to the mission of ending extreme poverty in our lifetime,” Kim wrote in a statement. “The work of the World Bank Group is more important now than ever as the aspirations of the poor rise all over the world, and problems like climate change, pandemics, famine and refugees continue to grow in both their scale and complexity.”

Since its founding at the end of World War II, the World Bank has been led by Americans, all of whom were appointed by the US president. The United States is the bank’s largest shareholder.

The practice has drawn criticism from some other nations, who have insisted the bank’s focus on providing loans to developing nations requires participation by leaders from other regions.

The leader of the World Bank’s sister organization, the International Monetary Fund, has always been European.

President Barack Obama broke tradition in 2012 by choosing Kim, who was serving as president of Dartmouth College at the time. Past bank leaders had emerged from the financial world, but Kim – who was born in Seoul, South Korea, but raised in Iowa – is an anthropologist and physician by training. Obama said at the time that it was “time for a development professional to lead the world’s largest development agency.”

He also considered candidates like then-Sen. John Kerry, who went on to become his second-term secretary of state; and then-US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice, who would become his national security adviser.

Kim’s nomination faced a challenge from Nigeria’s finance minister, the first time since the bank’s founding the US candidate faced serious opposition.

Ultimately Kim garnered enough support from the bank’s executive directors to become president, but the process of securing votes – which people close to the bank describe as “arm-twisting” – laid the groundwork for future challenges to the US control of the bank’s presidency.